Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

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Making Meaning in Literature Grades 6-8
Conversations in Literature — Workshop

About Making Meaning in Literature: A Video Library, Grades 6-8

Individual Clip Descriptions

1. Introducing the Envisionment-Building Classroom
2. Building a Literary Community
3. Asking Questions
4. Facilitating Discussion
5. Seminar Discussion
6. Dramatic Tableaux
7. Readers as Individuals
8. The Teacher’s Role in a Literary Community
9. Whole Group Discussions

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Classroom Lesson Plan

Professional Reflection

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Classroom Lesson Plan: Reading Workshop

Teacher: Flora Tyler, Picacho Middle School, Las Cruces, New Mexico

Flora Tyler's lesson plan is also available as a PDF file. See Materials Needed, below, for links to student activity sheets related to the lesson.

Grade Level: Sixth

Topic: Conducting a reading workshop

Materials Needed:

students studyingBackground Information:
By the time of year when this class was recorded, students are familiar with the classroom rules and procedures for readers' workshop. They are working on their individual goals, preparing literature log entries in their writer's notebooks and developing both a literary poster and a presentation based on a novel they have read during the school year.

In addition, students have been taught about Howard Gardner's work with multiple intelligences. References to these intelligences are made and connections to ways students use their intelligences are reinforced regularly. Students are asked to consider ways they can use several of their intelligences when preparing their literature presentations.

Lesson Objectives:
Students will:

  • increase their reading and writing skills.
  • set and meet individual reading goals.
  • choose individual literature to read.
  • read and enjoy the literature they read.
  • demonstrate knowledge of literary elements.
  • share insights about their reading with their classmates.

Expected Products From Lesson:

Instructional Strategies Implemented:

  • Collaborative learning
  • Students sharing books and writing pieces with each other
  • Teacher conferences
  • Students modeling finished reading projects

Collaborative Structure of Class:
Students are grouped heterogeneously. During the class period, some may be seated alone working on a project or completing a written response. Some may be in the reading area, choosing books, or reading independently. Some may be in designated areas for peer conferencing, or a group may be gathered in the presentation area with the teacher.

Lesson Procedures/Activities:

  • Mini-lesson
  • Status-of-the-class
  • Reading workshop
  • Group sharing

Follow-Up Activities or Culminating Activities:
Students will complete a literary poster and a literary presentation on a novel they have completed during the year. These will be shared and videotaped by other students.

Students may be assessed holistically on a daily basis through:

  • preparation and participation (successful meeting of self-determined goals) and
  • writer's notebook entries.

The following activities might receive scaled (or graded) evaluation:

  • literary poster and
  • literature presentation.

See Assessment and Evaluation: Some Useful Principles for a detailed explanation of holistic and scaled evaluation.

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